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Design Flaw: Front End Collision = Expensive Repairs

Discussion in 'Model S' started by cytek, Jul 1, 2011.

  1. cytek

    cytek Member

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    I am one of the reservation holder of Model S. Upon close up inspection on Model S prototype on display, I noticed the front end is a very poorly thought out design. Although the front end styling looks nice aesthetically with influence from Aston Martin's original design ($$$), the hood extends all the way to the front end above the grille without separate bumper section. During front end collisions (slow 3 mph), both the hood and the grille are the first impact point of contact and it will get easily damaged together with the front body panel. I also imagine of rumors that the charging port will also be hidden inside the front grille. This will be a very expensive repair cost potentially considering it's made of alluminum. I'd rather have a front panel with grille and bumper as one section for impact (crumple) zone that can be easily replaced at low cost, rather than having to also replace the hood as well. Who knows how much it will cost to also replace the front charging port? With similarities to Maserati's front end design, Maserati has done a good job designing their front end without exposing the hood to the front end.

    Also into consideration, insurance companies may raise the coverage premiums for Model S, due to discovering its expensive aluminum repair costs as described above.

    You can view how luxury cars fare in 3mph bumper crash test below;

    http://www.theautochannel.com/news/2007/08/03/057181.html

    I hope Tesla rethinks this major design flaw for avoiding expensive front end collision repair costs. They should reconsider affordable lower costs with minimum parts replacement for mass target market potential.
     
  2. William13

    William13 Member

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    Tesla has stated that their bumper will have boron in it for very high strength which I hope is enough to take care of your concern which I also share.
     
  3. cytek

    cytek Member

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  4. ckessel

    ckessel Active Member

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    Ugh, he posted this same uninformed stuff in multiple Tesla forums as well.
     
  5. Mycroft

    Mycroft Life happens

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    Practically any car made today is going to lose the hood, fenders, and of course bumper in nearly any front end collision.
     
  6. ckessel

    ckessel Active Member

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    #6 ckessel, Jul 5, 2011
    Last edited: Jul 5, 2011
    While I can see the concern in the image linked, I don't know enough about engineering to know how often this matters. Unless cytek has some sort of automotive engineering degree, especially with posting it in multiple places, this sounds like histrionic fear mongering. Even then, presumably it'll withstand normal 5mph bumper bashes without an issue. Any accident fast enough to crumple the hood is likely to set off the airbag and thus is going to be spendy regardless due to the airbag replacements. Maybe there's some range of impact that would crumple the hood without setting off the airbag, but I have no idea. As long as it withstands some guy bumping the nose when he pulls into an opposing parking space, I'm good.

    Edit: looking at pictures of BWM, Audi, and Mercedes (just googling "bmw" for example) shows an awful lot of cars with a similarly positioned hood.
     
  7. NEWDL

    NEWDL R#350 R#1323 Sig23 8136

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    This is the earliest of prototype cars that you are using to prove your point. That unit was never meant to show exact production specs. Please hold off wild cost accusations until you see what the production car will look like.

    To assume this will not be addressed is absurd.

    Being concerned is ok, voicing opinions is encouraged, making wild absurd accusations with poor data helps no one.
     
  8. dpeilow

    dpeilow Moderator

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    Somebody here works for an "energy consultancy" methinks.
     
  9. Nichen

    Nichen Member

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    Yeah I believe he might be sponsored by the other side, the darker side of the auto industry. There is still A LOT OF opposition against electrics, we have to bare that in mind and demand demand demand electrics. Even governments around the world seem to be pretty anti-EV. I guess some goverments think EVs will somehow ruin the world-economy (Oil-economy).
     
  10. doug

    doug Administrator / Head Moderator

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    bumper.jpg

    Hmmm... I hope someone has contacted Audi and all other luxury car manufacturers about this "design flaw." It apears pervasive.

    audi-a7-sportback606-5191985.jpg
     
  11. Jaff

    Jaff Active Member

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    Looks like an epidemic...better get the mule & wagon outta retirement Martha...
     
  12. Doug_G

    Doug_G Lead Moderator

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    All engineering is compromise. I think a far more important design consideration is crash protection for the occupants. Modern cars are designed to sacrifice themselves to protect the people inside - crumple zones, etc.
     
  13. stopcrazypp

    stopcrazypp Well-Known Member

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    #13 stopcrazypp, Jul 5, 2011
    Last edited: Jul 5, 2011
    Looks like the A4, which was ranked number two in terms of repair costs in your link, has the same design:

    [​IMG]
     
  14. cytek

    cytek Member

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    It's hilarious how you guys having wild conspiracy theories of me being an anti-EV. I am one of the Model S buyers too, so I am not here to bash on Tesla Model S. I was a former auto designer myself, so I am just giving my opinion on design improvements.

    The difference between Audi's design is the bonnet is a lot higher than Model S. That's why Audi's design works very well on bumper tests. Model S bonnet curves down much lower as you can see in the pic link below for comparison to Audi. We will wait and see what the final design of Model S is, after they have done the crash tests on Betas. I am not going to say anything more to create a stir.

    http://www.auto-power-girl.com/high-resolution-wallpapers/tesla-model-s/tesla-model-s-2009-5.jpg



    audi-a7-sportback606-5191985.jpg [/QUOTE]
     
  15. cytek

    cytek Member

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    Model S front design looks proportionally similar to Maserati's design. There is a very good engineering reason why Maserati originally designed its bonnet away from the front bumper section to avoid costly repairs on minor bumper impacts.
     

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  16. raymond

    raymond Member

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    I was actually convinced that there are regulations about this. This is one of the reasons all new cars have these ugly stick-out rear bumpers. The regulation - in my mind - states that low-impact collissions may not cause any (structural?) damage.

    Am I having delusions?
     
  17. ckessel

    ckessel Active Member

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    #18 ckessel, Jul 10, 2011
    Last edited: Jul 10, 2011
    Cytek, you've obviously got some crazy agenda to push. As I drive around and look at other cars, there are a huge number of them with designs just like the proposed Model S design as far as where the bonnet is located in proportion to other elements. With half the cars on the roads being trucks and SUVs, the few inches in height differential between the Model S and the pictured Audi is meaningless. If you were an auto designer and this is what you're getting so excited about you've felt a need to triple post it across at least here and the official Tesla forums, then maybe it's a good thing you're a "former" auto designer.

    You're just fear mongering for no reason.
     
  18. stopcrazypp

    stopcrazypp Well-Known Member

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    #19 stopcrazypp, Jul 10, 2011
    Last edited: Jul 10, 2011
    I don't know how close the height is, but I looked at the side profiles of all the cars in the bumper test list and only the Volvo S60 has the same bumper design as the Maserati (where the hood doesn't reach all the way to the front). It didn't do particularly well in terms of full frontal impact (it was middling). So I don't think the front bumper design that the Maserati has necessarily means lower repair costs.

    It seems it is more important that the bumper is able to absorb the crash energy before it affects other parts. IIHS recommends a wide and tall bumper bar (the bar underneath the bumper which you can't see just by looking at the outer design) as the best way to reduce repair costs. And the main variable seems to be the cost of replacement parts themselves (the article points out bumper replacement cost, headlight costs being fairly big ones).

    It seems the bumper bar extends most of the way under the headlights (probably like 60-70%) and there is energy absorbing foam under the front "grill".

    teslaalphatourfrontend1.jpg
     
  19. cytek

    cytek Member

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    #20 cytek, Jul 11, 2011
    Last edited: Jul 11, 2011
    Ckessel- Ouch! I don't know what your frickin problem is? From your postings, your negative attitude sounds very obnoxious and rude. It obviously tells us what type of a negative character you really are. If you really enjoy conducting armchair dotcom character assasinations and are happy that I am a former auto designer, that's fine because I don't really care what you think! You obviously don't know who you are dealing with here. FYI: I honestly don't regret being a former auto designer because I have a much better lucrative career position now working for a former F1 boss! Did I say F1 boss?? Yes he is an ex Formula One Racing boss. Now does that make you happy too? I suggest you please go feed your negativity elsewhere with your own attitude problem. I just don't waste my time with negative individuals like you. Your cooperation is greatly appreciated!

    Sorry to other folks for being off topic.


     

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